Pollution Prevention Is Kind To All Animals

Dolphins.lowjumpingfrogBy Joyce Amaro, LA Stormwater Public Education Manager

This week the American Humane Association is celebrating Be Kind To Animals Week – a time created to encourage compassion towards animals. While it’s easy for us animal lovers to list the ways we’ll be kind to animals this week, (volunteer at a local animal shelter or consider adopting a rescue dog or cat), it may not be as easy to recognize that many of the daily activities related to our pets can have a huge impact – either positively or negatively – on the marine animals who live just off our coast.

Join me in making a pledge to be kind to ALL animals this week – and every week – by adopting these three simple pollution preventing pet practices:

  1. Pick up after your dog every single time and dispose of the waste properly by placing it in your City-issued black bin. Never allow pet waste to flow into local storm drains or waterways. The bacterium in pet waste contaminates water, creating health and safety dangers for beach goers and marine life alike. Pet waste also adds excess nutrients to water bodies resulting in unwanted algae blooms. LA Stormwater provides pet owners with a free pet waste canister and bags that easily attaches to a dog’s leash, and receiving a free canister of dog waste bags is easy – all you have to do is request it.
  2. Maintain your car and dispose of used automotive fluids properly by taking them to one of the City’s seven SAFE Centers. Pets can be poisoned if they ingest gas, oil or antifreeze that drips onto the pavement or is stored in open containers. And, if these chemicals flow into our local rivers, creeks and lakes, it creates a toxic soup that can kill marine animals.
  3. When washing your pet, never allow pet products or wash water to flow into the street and be sure to bathe her on a permeable surface like grass. Bathing her indoors or at a professional groomer is even better. After all, doesn’t she deserve a day at the doggie spa?

Yes, this week will be filled with lots of kitty kisses and pooch smooches and maybe even a paw-dicure or two. But let’s not forget to be kind to our sea animals by preventing pollution. That’s how we can be kind to ALL animals! 

Photo courtesy of lowjumpingfrog.


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